"It was the most bizarre experience, because never before had I seen a coup advertised in advance," McGovern tells Loud & Clear, referring to the US-orchestrated Maidan protests in Kiev that led to the government of President Petro Poroshenko and Prime Minister Yatsenyuk.
"We had the Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs Victoria Nuland telling [US Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey] Pyatt on an…unencrypted telephone conversation, 'Look, we got this thing wired. We got this thing glued, and we’re midwifing this thing and Yats is the guy.'"
That conversation was published on YouTube two weeks before the coup took place.
"Yatsenyuk was appointed the prime minister, recognized immediately by our government, and he clearly was the guy that we picked to do our dirty work."
This was implemented through the US-funded National Endowment for Democracy, as well as other State Department projects.
"Victoria Nuland…bragged about having paid $5 billion to advance Ukrainian aspirations toward the West," he says.
But the destabilization of Ukraine is only the first part of a multi-step plan.
"The National Endowment for Democracy…talked about Ukraine being the biggest prize, sort of an interim step toward toppling Russian President Vladimir Putin," McGovern says.
"He said overtly, 'Ukraine’s choice to join Europe will accelerate the demise of the ideology of Russian imperialism that Putin represents. Russians, too, face a choice, and Putin may find himself on the losing end, not just in the near abroad, but in Russia itself.'"
Yatsenyuk’s resignation on Sunday shows the ongoing problems within the US-appointed Poroshenko government.
"The whole incident here is a reflection of how inept and how still corrupt the Ukrainian leaders are," McGovern says. "They’re so corrupt that they can’t even cooperate with the Europeans who want to save Ukraine for their own reasons."
While Yatsenyuk will leave power with little or no fanfare, the situation in Kiev is unlikely to improve.
"Ukraine is in shambles. This is a classic case of engineering a coup and not worrying about what happens the next day," McGovern says.
"Where can Ukrainians – who, as you say, are really suffering terribly – where can they expect to get help? Well they should be able to expect to get help from the perpetrators of this coup…though, if I were Ukrainian, I would have to look to my own devices, because Europeans and Americans are really good about destroying things…but not so much the next day."